Summer is over and Google thought it will be nice to give us something for the fall so here it is – Android 8.0 Oreo. Currently only available for Nexus (Nexus 6P and Nexus 5X) and Pixel (Pixel and Pixel XL), Android Oreo is not that distinct from its predecessor, but it has various features that make any app developer happy: persistent notifications, battery-life improvements and enhanced encryption. Let’s talk about the new features one by one:
Picture in picture and upgraded multi-window – maybe one of the most long-expected element is available now. Using this mechanism, the users can now watch a video in a pop-up while scrolling on the social networks or make a video call and read their emails at the same time. It is set up by default, but you can choose in Settings which apps you want to use it.
The multi-window feature is not new, but now, when the users open an app and go back to home screen, there is a silver of the app that stays on top, so they can see what is the app they opened. From there, they can preview the content or expand the app to full screen.
Camera – for Nexus and Pixel users, there is a new camera app that lets them zoom in the picture by double tapping. More, it is easier now to switch from camera mode to video mode and vice versa.
Notification Dots – Android 8.0 worked a lot on notifications and this feature enables little dots to show on apps icons or folders in order to show new notifications. More, the user can long press on the icon and see the notification in a pop-up and even have shortcuts for some actions or snooze it. The great thing for android developers is that they can administer those notifications. For instance, ongoing or persistent notifications can’t be snoozed and the time the notifications disappear can be set. As a detail, the background or the pattern of the notification can be changed.
Notification channels – Android Oreo formatted notifications as channels or categories. Every app can have different channels to send different kind of notifications and the users can control these channels now: from choosing which one to send notifications to blocking all the channels. For this to happen, developers must implement support, so the users can see the channels.
Google Play Protect – with Android Oreo, every app the user installs from Google Play is scanned for viruses or any threat. An upgraded feature is that Developer menu requests a PIN or a password. On the other side, apps will no longer have permission to the phone’s lock screen and Android ID cannot be used by developers to track users.
Project Treble – is a framework which allows the producers to adjust Android independent of the specific firmware.
Battery life – this new version of Android is more than the appearance. It increases the battery life and the phone efficacy. For Pixel, Android Oreo starts up twice as fast as Android Nougat. There are two kind of limits (for execution and location) that ban apps from excessively using the battery. It also brings a menu for battery where users can see individually how the apps are draining the battery.
Autofill and smart text selection – the new Autofill allows apps system-wide providers of autofill services. Users can use an app to keep evidence of addresses, usernames and passwords. The text selection got also upgraded. With Android Oreo, the user has a new copy paste menu with actions like Share and Paste. But the magic is when Android recognizes addresses, names, phone numbers and URLS. For example, when the user selects a phone number, there will be a link to the dialer.
Adaptive icons, better animations and more colors – Android Oreo makes up for all the criticism the other versions got. For Android developers, adaptive icons comes in handy, because they can alter the shape of the app shortcut. The new animations features let developers create more realistic momentum in menus and Android Oreo sets up wide color gamut profiles.
Miscellaneous features – NAN or the neighborhood aware networking enables phones and tablets to connect without Wi-Fi. Two Android devices can find each other and share data at high speed or establish a low-power network to share small bits of data like sensor readings and location.